Monday, March 29, 2004

My new home

Well, I got moved into my new home on Saturday and it was pretty much a textbook flitting. We had loads help, and can I offer my most sincere thanks to Aaron, Andrew, Dave, Dougie and George. My services are at your disposal next time you guys are moving. I spent all of Sunday unpacking and by the end of the day, I had a perfectly livable house. I do have an awful lot of stuff, but I don't want to get rid of most of it, so I've got an awful lot of it stuffed into drawers now. I had previously had the broadband activated and so was able to have the home network up and running fairly quickly (thanks to some impressive wire-laying by Stevie). We don't have a cable in the living room yet, but as soon as I'm out of debt enough to get one of these, we will have!

I think that all the doubts and fears that I had before moving in have been dispelled by a few nights there and moving all my own stuff in. It's official: I like my new home :-).

Friday, March 26, 2004

End of industrial action (maybe)

The AUT annual conference has voted to suspend the ongoing industrial action while a new postal ballot is put to members regarding the new pay offer. I'm very relieved to hear this. While I do, of course, support my union over this, I've been very uncomfortable about the potential effects of the action short of a strike on students, particularly as we're coming up to exam season. Hopefully all this will be settled before that happens and students won't have to suffer because of our action. The corollary to this, of course, is that I don't want to lose whatever support from students that we have, as we would almost inevitably do were the action to continue for much longer.

Thursday, March 25, 2004

RBS supports Mozilla (finally!)

And it's about time! The Royal Bank of Scotland have finally unblocked Mozilla from their online banking site. I filed an evangalism bug over two years ago and have been pestering them regularly ever since. They've now finally got off their backsides and done something about it. That's made me happy for the evening now :-).

Oh, and if you want to know why this makes me happy, read a bit about standards compliance and why it's a Good Thing™.

He's back, and now he's got a blog

No, not the Doctor (this time), but the the boy Quail (who did once play the Doctor in an iO First Contact type game, if that counts for anything). You can find his blog on LiveJournal.

Wednesday, March 24, 2004

He's back, and now he's got a name...

So Christopher Eccleston will be the new Doctor Who, eh? I have to say that I don't think that I've ever seen anything that he's been in, but the reaction on this BBC discussion and from Gallifrey One has been excellent, so here's hoping for great things to come from the Who team.

Monday, March 22, 2004

End in sight for AUT dispute?

There were some positive noises coming from the AUT on Friday indicating that the employers had basically caved over most points. However, within twenty-four hours, the Guardian was reporting that this wasn't the case and that the deal was under threat. There's been nothing since (although the principal of Glasgow University has issued a fairly positive statement), but I hope that someone knocks some heads and we can get this sorted out pretty darned quick.

Monday, March 08, 2004

Funny Money

This article at the Guardian (forwarded from Food Factory) is hilarious.

Friday, March 05, 2004

Hunting mosquitos with nukes...

... was how The Register put the new EU Intellectual Property Rights Enforcement Directive which is designed to make it easier to tackle large scale pirating operations. However, it seems that the bill hasn't been thought through properly and currently fails to distinguish between commercial counterfeiting, and inadvertent individual copyright infringement, meaning a 12-year old P2P file sharer, or someone photocopying pages from a library text book at university, is seen as identical to a large scale piracy operation filtering money into organised crime. Not only that, but some of the allowed actions are incredible, for example enabling rights holders to hire private police to raid a suspect's home. To me this just seems plain wrong and I really hope that it will be redrafted before being pushed through the European Parliament.

Tuesday, March 02, 2004

Copyright news

The Washington policy group, the Committee for Economic Development, has published a report summed up by C|Net as "the entertainment industry's pursuit of tough new laws to protect copyrighted materials from online piracy is bad for business and for the economy". It's nice to a see a major institution weighing in to the intellectual property argument with all the publicity and debate amongst the mainstream that this will generate. For anyone that wants to try and weigh through it, the actual report (all 101 pages) is here.

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